Easy Crock Pot Venison Chili
A Satisfying Home-Style Dish with Just the Right Kick
As far as chili recipes go, there might be billions online! Four-star, five-alarm, tailgate, party. With bacon, beer, jalapeno, sausage. In my house, we have 3 or 4 go-to recipes just for venison chili alone.
This recipe gets to the heart of what makes a good bowl of satisfying, home-style chili, without a lengthy amount of prep time, work, or cost. It has a whole, well-rounded flavor throughout, is not too heavy on any one element, and adds just the right amount of heat (that is, spicy enough to satisfy dad's picky palette, but not too spicy for the kids! Well, ok, maybe a smidge too spicy for the kids...). Just chop up a few vegetables, cook with the meat, and throw everything else into the crock pot. A few hours later, you've got a delicious bowl of chili that everyone will enjoy! And because it stays warm (and gets better) in the crock pot, this recipe is perfect for families with different schedules, gatherings, and guests throughout the day.
Ground beef may be substituted for the venison. Just drain after cooking and add cumin to crock pot, not directly to the meat.
Crank Up the Flavor!
For an even deeper, richer, more complex and flavorful chili, give this a try:
- add 1/4 cup of strongly brewed coffee, and
- 1 - 2 Tbsp of cocoa powder
Why? Plants that grow together go well together! Chili peppers, coffee plants, and cacao trees are long-time friends.
- 1-2 lbs ground venison
- 1 onion, peeled and diced
- 1 green pepper, seeded and diced
- 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 can (28oz) tomatoes, diced or whole, undrained
- 1 can (15oz) tomato sauce
- 1 can (6-8oz) tomato paste
- 2 cans (15oz each) kidney beans, light or dark, drained
- 2 stalks celery, chopped
- 2 cubes beef bouillon, dissolved in 1 cup hot water
- 2 to 4 Tbsp chili powder
- 1/2 Tbsp Worcestershire Sauce
- 1/2 Tbsp oregano
- 1 tsp tabasco or Red Hot sauce
- 1 tsp basil
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp hot or regular paprika
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/8 tsp black pepper
- In a skillet, break up ground venison. Sprinkle with cumin. Add onion, green pepper, and garlic. Cook until browned throughout.
- In a crock pot, add remaining ingredients (in order works well). Add contents of skillet and stir.
- Cook on low for 8-10 hours, or on high for 4-5 hours.
Make It, Then Rate It!
Enjoy now, later, tomorrow, alone, with friends, topped with cheddar, sour cream, or both! Goes great with cornbread muffins, cornbread, or just plain buttered rolls.
This is a highly flexible recipe with lots of room for improvisation. If you feel like adding an ingredient or omitting a spice, the choice is yours! I advise though to resist the temptation to increase the amount of the spices I have listed to your liking until the chili has simmered for 4-5 hours, as they increase in potency throughout cook time. But no matter what you do, you'll be relieved to have a hot, delicious meal at the ready for you, your friends and family. I'm going to have a bowl now for dinner, and leave the crock pot simmer throughout the evening - it's my turn to host game night tonight!